Poetry 2014 / Volume 45

A Poem for Luis — Michelle Donahue

San Miguel, Guatemala

You can’t speak mine
so I’ll try to speak yours.

Aburrido you said. Bored
when the other guests

spoke only English & you were
left alone working at the bar

with nothing but sky & Lago
Peten Itza lit like a carnival.

Aburrido. Your eyes bore into
mine. You look so cansado. Not

tired, but your eyes always water
red, burning to wear glasses.

Es muy caro. You said, always.
Expensive. Books, pills, trips

to the ocean. Caro. Expensive.
your face inked lake dark.

Face. Cara. Do you want a photo?
We walked high to El Mirador

San Miguel peninsula stretching
like horizon. No, estoy muy feo.

Ugly. I should have said I like
your face. Lo siento. Sorry.

Literally, I feel it. I wish I could
bring you to the US. As I sit here

at the open bar wishing for home
and other homes, I know that

longing for a world out of reach.
I feel it. But I’ve left, felt the flex

of different soil, I was born happy
in a right place and still I tell you

I don’t have much money. Mira.
Let’s look at the lake & imagine.

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